Rochester Celebrates ADA Anniversary

Jul 24, 2015

Credit Veronica Volk / WXXI

In 1990, then-President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law. It said persons with disabilities could not be discriminated against in employment, transportation, communications, government and public services.

In the 25 years since, the City of Rochester says it has continued to work toward inclusion. At a commemorative event at Edgerton Spray Park, representatives from the city celebrated their efforts to make public areas more universally accessible -- most recently, playgrounds, waterfronts, and the public market.

City Engineer James McIntosh says this park and others across the city were made accessible thanks to over twenty million dollars in investments.

"This spray park is a recent addition to our very popular spray park program, and like all of our spray parks has been designed with universal access in mind."

Stephanie Woodward at the Center for Disability Rights says the city's efforts to move forward are worthy of celebration, but there's still work to be done, including the city's entertainment.

"Rochester is known for having great festivals and events and the city should really work to ensure that all of these events are accessible. The park ave fest, for example, isn't accessible."

Woodward says there are also issues of discrimination that the ADA doesn't address that need the city's attention.